CHA Steering Committee
The CHA Steering Committee, comprised of prominent community leaders committed to improving health and wellness in the City, helps to guide Alexandria's Community Health Assessment process.
List of CHA Steering Committee Members
- Canek Aguirre, Economic Opportunities Commission
- Quintin Borders, Alleyne AME Church
- James L. Durham, Alexandria Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee
- Laurie Flynn, Partnership for a Healthier Alexandria
- Matthew Gillette, Theater Church
- Ann Harbour, Inova Hospital System
- Chris Harris, NAACP
- Dallice Joyner, Friends of Guest House
- Diana Karczmarczyk, Partnership for a Healthier Alexandria
- Jane King, Alexandria Commission on Aging
- Jane Downing Knops, Neighborhood Health
- Allen Lomax, Chair of Partnership for a Healthier Alexandria
- Kendra Martello, Alexandria Commission on Women
- Liz Martinez, Neighborhood Health
- Jean Mayhan, Medical Reserve Corps
- Nancy McCormick, St. Joseph's Church
- Asma Omer, MD; Medical Reserve Corps
- Keith Pettigrew, Alexandria Redevelopment and Housing Authority
- Tricia Rodgers, Northern Virginia Health Foundation
- Marissa Salgado, Casa Chirilagua
- Nasreen Saroor, Medical Reserve Corps
- Jim Scott, Applied Policy
- Charles Sumpter, Alexandria School Health Advisory Board
- Dan Sweeney, Friends of Alexandria Mental Health Center
- Andrew Torre, Alexandria Commission on HIV/AIDS
- Sam Whiteside, Motley Fool
Canek Aguirre is a community advocate and progressive leader with a track record of building coalitions to amplify the voices that aren’t always heard. He spent three years serving students and families in Alexandria City Public Schools, and currently works to improve health outcomes for Medicaid populations throughout Northern Virginia.
Mr. Durham is a resident and volunteer in Alexandria, Virginia. He is chairman of the Alexandria Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee (BPAC), a volunteer-led organization that promotes walking and biking in the city. He also serves on the Executive Steering Committee for the Partnership for a Healthier Alexandria (PHA), a citizen-led coalition of non-profit organizations, schools, municipal agencies, local businesses, government, community leaders, and concerned citizens who come together to promote and preserve a healthy Alexandria; Mr. Durham also Co-Chairs PHA’s Healthy Eating and Active Living (HEAL) work-group.
Mr. Durham serves on the Eisenhower West Landmark Van Dorn Implementation Advisory Group, a group established by City Council in March 2016 to provide guidance to staff on the infrastructure, funding plans, and related follow up studies outlined in the Eisenhower West Small Area Plan and the Landmark Van Dorn Corridor Plan. He also serves on the Board of the Seminary Hill Association, Inc. (SHA), an Alexandria civic association and is one of two SHA representatives on a Central Alexandria Traffic Study Task Force.
Mr. Durham previously served as Chief Operating Officer of Strategic Analysis, Inc. (SAI), an Arlington-based firm providing management and technical services to customers in the Departments of Defense and Homeland Security. Prior to his tenure at SAI, Durham served as Vice President/Director with Systems Planning and Analysis, Inc. (SPA) in Alexandria and completed a 26-year career in the U.S. Navy in submarine command and intelligence operations. Durham holds a degree in Mathematics from the U.S. Naval Academy, and a degree in Ocean Engineering from MIT and the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. Mr. Durham and his wife Carey have lived in Alexandria since 1996. They are fortunate that their daughters and their families, including six grandchildren, live nearby in Alexandria’s West End.
Ms. Flynn chairs the Mental Health and Wellness priority area of the Partnership for a Healthier Alexandria. She serves on the board of Voices for Virginia’s Children and is a guest lecturer at Columbia, NYU and the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health. Prior to retiring from Columbia University in 2012, Laurie spent over 30 years in mental health advocacy and policy. She led a national center at Columbia on adolescent depression and suicide prevention for 12 years. Previously, she served 16 years as executive director of the National Alliance on Mental Illness. Laurie was appointed by President Bill Clinton to the National Bioethics Advisory Commission and also served on President Barack Obama’s Health Policy Advisory Committee. She has a family member with a serious mental illness.
Mr. Gillette is a community cultivator who believes in the power of neighbors to make the City of Alexandria better. While he has only called Alexandria home for the past five years, he has fallen in love with the people and neighborhoods of what he calls the "Mount Vernon Ave corridor." He wears many professional hats including Small Group and Missions Director for National Community Church, Executive Director of Restore Alexandria, and Regional Connector for the Parish Collective. He is also involved in many community organizations such as Hunger Free Alexandria and the Del Ray Business Association.
Ms. Knops is Director of Community Partnerships & Communications at Neighborhood Health, a Federally-Qualified Health Center, where she also manages a portfolio of grants, including the organization’s Ryan White HIV program. Prior to joining Neighborhood Health, Ms. Knops spent seven years working for the Children’s Hospital Association, where she was Director of Education. In a volunteer capacity, she serves on the Board of Directors for the local community foundation -- ACT for Alexandria – and is also a member of the advisory board for Healthy Families Alexandria, a home visiting program for new parents. Ms. Knops holds a Bachelor of Arts from Indiana University in Portuguese and Latin American Studies, and a Master of Public Health in Population Planning and International Health from the University of Michigan.
Mr. Lomax is one of the founding members of the Partnership for a Healthier Alexandria and currently serves as its Chair. He also chairs the Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition of Alexandria. Allen is a member of a variety of organizations including the Alexandria Opioid Work Group, the Executive Committee of the Alexandria Council of Human Services Organizations, the Governing Board of the Partnership to Prevent and End Homeless in Alexandria, the Volunteer Alexandria Board of Directors, and the Advisory Board of the Suicide Prevention Alliance of Northern Virginia. Retired from the federal government, Allen is a consultant focused on several issues such as strategic planning and performance measurement, community indicators, and community engagement.
Ms. Martinez, a resident of Alexandria since 1988, is a patient and board member of Neighborhood Health. She is also the chair of the Patient/Quality Committee at Neighborhood Health. Liz is especially interested in assuring access to primary health care for low-income and HIV+ individuals as she deals with these same issues herself.
Dr. Omer has her Bachelor's degree in medicine and surgery. She is currently a proud volunteer with the Alexandria Medical Reserve Corps (MRC), and is bilingual (Arabic and English).
Ms. Rodgers has worked in philanthropy in Northern Virginia for over 20 years and is currently the program officer for the Northern Virginia Health Foundation. Her health care background includes work as a hospital social worker, a researcher, and on the boards of an HIV-AIDS and a homecare agency. She currently serves on the Board of the Virginia Oral Health Coalition, the Advisory Board of the Suicide Prevention Alliance of Northern Virginia, the Alexandria Public Health Advisory Commission, and the Partnership for a Healthier Alexandria. She holds Master’s degrees in both Social Work and Adult Education and was named an Alexandria Living Legend in 2014.
Mr. Sumpter is currently the chairman of the Alexandria School Health Advisory Board and the former chairman of the Alexandria Commission on HIV/AIDS. While on the Commission, he served as an outspoken advocate, working to increase support for prevention efforts and advocating for those hit hardest. Additionally, he sits on the Board of Directors for Safe Space NOVA, an Alexandria non-profit focused on developing positive programming for LGBTQ+ youth. Mr. Sumpter graduated from Union College in 2007 and the Catholic University of America in 2012. In 2016, Charles was a fellow at the Sorensen Institute for Political Leadership at the University of Virginia and was later recognized that year as one of Alexandria’s Top 40 under 40 by the Chamber of Commerce.
Mr. Torre lives and works in Alexandria, VA as a Non-Medical Case Manager for Neighborhood Health’s Ryan White Program. He is the Chair of the Alexandria Commission on HIV/AIDS, and a Commissioner on the DC Regional Planning Commission on HIV and Health. Andrew recently graduated from George Washington University with his Masters in Public Health.